BENTON — There was good news and bad news for Polk County’s diamond teams Thursday as one squad earn a spot in next week’s region tournament play, while the other had its season come to a screeching halt.
The Lady Wildcats defeated Sequoyah 8-2 Thursday to advance to today’s District 5-AA championship game in Decatur against top-seeded Meigs County, the only league team to have defeated Polk this season. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.
Region 3-AA play will begin on Monday with the Lady Wildcats either traveling to District 6-AA champion East Hamilton or hosting runner-up Hixson, depending on tonight’s results.
Meanwhile, the second-seeded Wildcat baseball team was stunned by No. 3 seed Meigs County 11-10 in the loser’s bracket final Thursday, bringing Polk’s 2013 campaign to a close.
The Lady Wildcats gave up an unearned run in the opening inning Thursday, but held the Lady Chiefs to just one more run the rest of the game, while putting runs on the board themselves in half od their six at bats.
After getting three runners on with nothing to show for it in the opening frame, a pair of Polk players circled the bases in the second inning. Ashlynn Johnson drove in Jordan Triplett, who had been hit by a pitch to open the at bat, while Felecia Johnson reached on an error and later scored on a passed ball to give the hosts the lead.
The Lady Wildcats added to their lead with a trio of runs in the third frame as Emily Bates’s double drove home Lilly Cuzzort and Hannah Triplett, who had both singled. Bates scored when Johnson reached on an error.
Sequoyah added its second run in the top of the fourth, but that would be all it would get as Lady Wildcat hurler Jordan Triplett sat down 11 of the final 13 batters she faced. She finished with a half dozen strikeouts and didn’t walk anybody in the complete-game effort.
Polk tacked on three more runs in its final at bat with Cuzzort and Hannah Triplett both lacing RBI-singles, while Sydney Sloan reached on an error and scored on a passed ball.
In the boys’ action on the field next door, the Wildcats fell into a 10-3 hole, but exploded for a seven-run rally in the bottom of the fourth frame to even things up.
Meigs County (19-8), which had a seven-run rally of its own in the top of the second, was able to come up with a run in its final at bat and then hold the host scoreless in the bottom of the frame for the victory.
Jake Moon blasted a grand slam for the Tigers, while Dustin Kennedy helped out with triple as part of a 3-for-3 day.
Ben Norwood went 3-for-3 with a trio of RBIs for Polk, while teammate Matt Hammonds was 3-for-4. Will Richmond and Chris Wimberley both went 2-for-4 for the Wildcats.